Five Things Friday
Since the Kentucky Derby is here, we decided to do "Five Things Friday" inspired by our favorite derby drink... Mint Juleps! An estimated 120,000 Mint Juleps are consumed at the Kentucky Derby each year. Whether cheering from the stands or celebrating with friends at home, everyone should enjoy the refreshing taste of this mint infused cocktail. We have done some research and even conducted a tasting to make sure our recommendations are up to par. Here are our 5 favorite Mint Juleps to try for the derby!
1. The Classic Mint Julep (MyRecipes)
3 fresh mint leaves
1 tablespoon *Mint Simple Syrup
1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) bourbon
1 (4-inch) cocktail straw or coffee stirrer
1 fresh mint sprig
Powdered sugar (optional)
Place mint leaves and Mint Simple Syrup in a chilled julep cup. Gently press leaves against cup with back of spoon to release flavors. Pack cup tightly with crushed ice; pour bourbon over ice. Insert straw, place mint sprig directly next to straw, and serve immediately. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, if desired.
* Mint Simple Syrup (also from Southern Living). Bring 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water to boil in medium sauce-pan over high heat. Boil, stirring often, 5 minutes or until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and add 10-12 fresh mint leaves and cool (about 10 minutes). Pour into a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid; cover and chill 24hours. Discard mint before use.
2. Strawberry Mint Julep (One Kings Lane)
1 bunch fresh mint
1/2 tablespoon of honey
1/2 tablespoon of hot water
2 1/2 ounces of strawberry bourbon
fresh strawberries for garnish
Wash mint and remove leaves from stems, reserving a handful of sprigs for garnish. Add 10 mint leaves, honey, and hot water to a julep cup. Muddle well with a cocktail muddler or the end of a wooden spoon. Add strawberry bourbon* to the mint mixture. Fill the cup with crushed ice and stir until the outside of the cup becomes frosty. Garnish with a fresh mint sprig and a slit strawberry.
3. Jalapeno Spiked Bourbon Mint Julep (Country Living)
4 fresh mint leaves
1 oz. Jalapeño Simple Syrup (recipe follows)
2.50 oz. bourbon
1 very thinly sliced jalapeño round
Jalapeño Simple Syrup
1 c. sugar
2 jalapeño peppers
In a julep cup, pour Jalapeño Simple Syrup and add mint; gently bruise leaves with a muddler or wooden spoon. Add enough crushed ice to fill two-thirds of the cup. Add bourbon and stir gently; then add a bit more crushed ice. Top with a splash of club soda. Garnish with mint sprig and jalapeño.
In a small saucepan over high heat, combine 1 cup water, sugar, and jalapeños. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat and let steep 20 minutes.
Strain syrup, discard jalapeños, and cool syrup. (Simple syrup can be refrigerated, in an airtight container, for up to 6 months.)
4. Blueberry Mint Julep (HowSweetEats)
2 1/2 ounces bourbon
1 ounce mint simple syrup
1 ounce mint blueberry puree
fresh mint leaves
Blueberry mint puree
2/3 cup fresh blueberries
2 tablespoons mint simple syrup
Combine bourbon, mint simple syrup* and mint blueberry puree together and shake or stir well. Pour over crushed iced and serve with extra mint leaves. Blueberry puree: In a mini food processor or blender, combine blueberries and mint simple syrup until pureed.
5. Mint Julep Lip Scrub
Now this might not be a drink, but it sure is tasty! We are obsessed with this mint julep lip scrub from Lush! It helps soften your lips and you can lick off the excess. A definite must for dry lips after being in the sun cheering on your favorite stallion!
Which recipe looks the best to you? Let us know if you try one!
And the derby weekend wouldn't be complete without the perfect outfit, so check out our derby style!